Cannon Family Crest

Hello, as you can see I am still alive. I have been working on some other exiting projects and I had to stop posting to this blog for some weeks. Among other things I have been working on preparing new Heraldry products for this blog. I am sure you are going to like it. Expect the upcoming store update. I will keep you informed. Tonight we have an interesting last name CANNON.

cannonSurname of Irish origin. The original Gaelic form of the name cannon is O Canain, from the word cano, which means

wolf cub.

Spelling variations of the name cannon dating from Middle Ages include Cannon, O’Cannon, MacCannon,

MacCannan, and many more.

First found in Tirconnell in Northern Ireland where they held a family seat from very ancient times.

In the 18th and 19th centuries, thousands of Irish families fled an Ireland that was forcibly held through by England through its imperialistic policies.

A large portion of these families crossed the Atlantic to the shores of North America.

Early North American immigration records indicate people bearing the Irish name cannon or a variant settled in Virginia in 1646; in the Barbados in 1660. Many other Cannon settled in Philadelphia Pa. between 1772 and 1866.

You will be amazed on the number of last names that have variations like Cannon. There are not that many sources that indicate the variation of the last name so if you have information about this, please share it with us. And if you know a Cannon, share this blog with them. I will see you tomorrow with another family crest.

El Herlado



  1. Hi there EJ. I knew that my surname came from the Irish word for wolf cub, but I did NOT realise that I probably have many distant cousins in the USA & Barbados! I was in Barnados for my Honeymoon in 1995 – wish I’d known then what I’ve just learnt now! Many thanks!

    Best Wishes
    Desmond Cannon aka “South Munster Wolf Cub”


  2. I don’t have much information on the Cannon family, but know that I am a descendant of Jeremiah Cannon, who originated from County Cork Ireland. He would be my great Great Grandfather, and is buried in the St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetary in McGregor, Iowa. One of his Daughters married my great grandfather, Mark C Young, who is also buried in St. Mary’s. I don’t really know any more about the family history, other than he was the first generation of Cannon in his family to make it to the U.S.

  3. The Cannons are descended from two of Ireland’s most renowned Kings: Conn of the Hundred Battles and Niall of the Nine Hostages. The O’Cannons have been described as “Ancient Princes of Tir Connaill” and “Valiant Chiefs”. However their 350 year dynasty in Tir Connaill ended in 1250. Their ancient territory would seem to have been Tir Aeda (now the barony of Tirhigh) after the deaths of Rory O’ Canannain and his son Niall O’Canannain in 1250, the sept declined greatly in power. Brian O’Neill died ten years later in 1260, he had supported an O’Canannain claimant to Tir Conaill i.e. to the Kingdom of Tir Conaill (Tirconnell). The personal name Canannain is a diminutive of Cano meaning ‘wolf cub’. Canannain was fifth in descent from Flaithbertach mac Loingsig (died 765), high-king of Ireland; they were the descendants of Neill of the Nine Hostages (Irish: Niall Noigiallach) who died c. 405 A.D. by his son, Conall Gulban who gave his name to Tir Conaill, the Land of Conall, now County Donegal.

    Ui Canannain was the ancestral name of the Cannons and Tir Connaill (all of County Donegal and part of County Londonderry) was the “Land of the Cannons”. By the early 1600s the name Ui Canannain had been anglicised to O’Cannon. Further anglicisation took place during the Penal laws in the late 1700s and early 1800s and the name in County Donegal became Cannon. In the early 1880s there were just 200 families bearing the Cannon surname living in County Donegal, who were mainly tenant farmers. The Cannons/O’Canannains, were of the ancient sept of Cenell Conaill, a branch of the northern Ui Neill and descend from Ruaidri ua Canannain (died 30 November 950 A.D.) King of Cenel Conaill, and grandson of Canannain, who flourished in the second half of the ninth century. One of Neill’s most famous descendants was George Washington, the first President of the United States of America. The site of the ancient seat of the O’Canannains was near Letterkenny the largest town of County Donegal, which is said on good authority to represent the hillside of the O’Cannons (English translation).

  4. Dana,

    Thank you for the great info you shared with us. I will post it as post in our blog so other people can get to it easier. Thanks again!
    El Heraldo

  5. Hello All,
    My full name is Mark Joseph Cannon. My history is from County Cork Ireland. I read somewhere that our name has changed throughout the years. I live in Ontario, Canada. My Grandparents were Cannon & O’Brien, both from Ireland. I’m not sure when they came to Canada. Our name supposedly was O’Cainin, O’Cannon & they dropped the O when they came to Canada. Originally upon coming to Canada, the first place of residence was NewBrunswick, where I was raised for the first ten years of my life. If anyone thinks we are somehow related, please let me know. I have relatives in Alberta, Canada, Ottowa, Ontario, Canada. Ottowa being a city in Ontario & our country’s capitol.

    Bye for now.
    Mark Cannon

  6. my father was born at meenacarn lettermacaward donegal
    he came to scotland in 1919 aged 14, several older siblings sailed to america possibly philadelphia! just discovered your site and look forward to searching for more info. thank you.

  7. Hello,
    My name is Teresa Cannon Freeman, and I find the Cannon history quite interesting. My great grandfather, John Cannon, was born in Ireland in 1830 and emigrated from County Cork. I believe his wife died on ship during the voyage. He married Alice Flynn in1854 in Clinton County, Ohio. He died in Columbus, Ohio in 1911. I would appreciate any information about him.
    Teresa Cannon Freeman
    Wooster, Ohio

  8. hi guys, this one is for Kathleen. My family is from Meenacarn as well..My grandmother was Bridget Cannon who married Neil Duffy from Meenacarn. You might be able to trace your father in the 1911 archives..this is the link for the Cannons in Meenacarn and my great grandmother was Sisely, so no doubt you can find your father in here as well..were probably related in some way ;-) select the whole of the test and paste it in your browser..

  9. My great grandfather Condy (Cornelius) Cannon was born somewhere in Co. Donegal in about 1862 to John and Mary (Kinney) Cannon. He came to the US in about 1875-1880, leaving behind his mother and sister. When he died in 1926 his sister, a Mrs. John Gillespie, was still alive and in Ireland. He was a handsome man, who worked in the coal mines near Hazleton, in NE Pennsylvania. He married Bridget McMonigle who had been born in the US and they had 10 children. I wish I could find where exactly Condy was born. Best wishes.

  10. Contact information for the above post:

    Mike Cannon
    Shiremanstown, PA – USA
    (717) 731-0403

  11. My wifes maiden name was Cannon and we have tried for some time to find out her family motto is. Any idea?

  12. The maternal side of my family were Cannon’s. My Grandmother was Mary Cannon from Meenacarn, she married Patrick Joseph Gallagher and they lived in Dooey, Lettermacaward. Brothers and sisters names were Dominic, Patrick, Cormack, John, Peter, Bridget, Rose, James, Hugh, Joseph, Michael, and Twin girls who died at birth. Patrick, John and Peter went to the USA and did not return to Ireland. All other brothers and sisters lived in Ireland and Scotland. Their Mother was Sisley and their father was John. All born in and around Donegal. Wondered if any of this information helps others and in return maybe a swop of information. My mother lives in England now. Sisley and John were her maternal Grandparents.

  13. I would like to trace my fathers side of the family I believe my great grandfather came from bray grandfather tom married sarah moynahan and settled in Ayrshire they had a family of 7.Tom, James, George,Joeseph, Pat, Johnny, Sheila,Mary any info would be nice.

  14. i would love to find more info on my last name, family history etc.. i cant afford to pay what the sites want for info i cant verify, anyone got any ideas shoot me an email! cannon family from new england, conneticut, and Vermont… i have no idea what my roots are would love to know~

  15. I always love looking up the different facts about my last name. In one article, I read the name Cannon was also given to those who had braved such a dangerous weapon in battle; if there is truth to that I don’t know. It’s still all pretty cool though. I’ve always been told my last name just simply means “The Wolf” which in itself is really cool. Also, my family came from the Isle of Mann in Ireland, which I did not see anywhere here. Is that place where the land of the Cannon’s was as meantioned in an earlier comment? I sure would like to know. Anyways though I just love the history of it all, and my name; one of the best out there!

  16. Dustin, first talk to ALL your relatives (parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins) then find your local Church of Latter Day Saints (Mormons) and they can tell you where their nearest genealogical research facility is located. Also check your local library, some have old newspapers and census records as well as on-line access to some sites. By the way, if the original name was Cannon and Irish, chances are VERY high that ancestor came from Co. Donegal. Good luck searching.

  17. Hi, i am having trouble finding a cannon tartan, can anyone please help

  18. Hey guys, I’ve been trying to check up on my families background and am having little luck finding out anything. I was born in Australia and so was my father, Patrick Duffy Cannon the 2nd but my grandfather was born in Scotland. He was Patrick Duffy Cannon the first. Also would love to know the family motto if there is one, thanks guys

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